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Counseling and Social Change


Undergraduate Program Graduate Program Concentration Focus Online Hybrid

The counseling and social change minor is offered through the Department of Counseling and School Psychology and provides students the tools to seek change in diverse social contexts. It is an undergraduate, interdisciplinary 18-unit minor that encompasses social justice and diversity.

This minor, offered through the Department of Counseling and School Psychology (CSP), builds on CSP’s commitment to facilitating individual, group and systems change in diverse social contexts. The minor introduces students to skills and concepts used to understand and create such change, and to professional career paths such as school and community counseling, clinical psychology, social work, family therapy, and school psychology. It provides immersion in theory and experience-based practice. The minor is open to all students.

There are four core classes with additional classes selected from other departments such as Women Studies, Africana Studies or Sociology. The curriculum focuses on human relationships, and pushes students to cause social change in their communities.

  • Open to students in all majors
  • Preparation for graduate study in human services fields such as community, rehabilitation, or school counseling; clinical counseling, or school psychology, social work, or marriage and family therapy
  • Emphasis on social justice, diversity, and social location issues
  • Course electives selected from several departments
  • Core Courses in Department of Counseling and School Psychology

What you will learn:

  • Theories, approaches and helping techniques used in human services fields; for instance, attending and responding skills, conflict resolution, problem solving, and decision-making skills
  • Influences of socio-cultural issues on shaping human problems
  • How to examine gender, ethnicity and class in cultural interactions between clients and human service professionals
  • Context and systemic influences on the intersection of social change and social justice

To complete the minor, you must complete two elective and four core courses as detailed below.

One eligible lower division course (3 unit)
Completed in EITHER the first or second year
CSP 400
Counseling and the Helping Professions
CSP 401
Quest for Identity
CSP 320
Intro to Counseling Skills and Practices
CSP 460
Counseling and Social Change
Plus one eligible upper division elective (3 unit)
Selected in the Fall or Spring in EITHER the Junior or Senior Year

Specific Requirements of the Minor

Lower Division Elective: 1 Course (3 units)

CFD 135, 270, 272; PSY 101; SOC 101, 150; SWORK 110, 120;  WMNST 101, 102

CORE: 4 Courses (12 units)

Core classes must be taken in the following order:

  1. CSP 400 Counseling & the Helping Professions (3)
  2. CSP 401 Quest for Identity (3)
  3. CSP 320 Introduction to Counseling Skills & Practices (3)
  4. CSP 460 Counseling & Social Change (3)

Upper Division Elective: 1 Course (3 units)*

AFRAS 320, 331; ASIAN 459, 460; ED 451; CFD 335, 536, 537, 560, 578; CSP 300, 310*, 420; PSY 344, 345; SOC 352, 436, 450; SWORK 370; WMNST 310, 360, 536, 572, 565

See  Our Faculty page for information about our faculty and lecturers.

While many of our students are interested in counseling and the helping professions, the Counseling and Social Change minor is interdisciplinary and is designed to teach concepts related to diversity, social justice, and personal development. Many students find their experience in the minor useful for a wide range of fields such as psychology, social work, education, law, business, medicine, and communication.
The minor is open to students from all majors and serves as a great supplement for several academic disciplines.
There is no class standing requirement (i.e. freshman, sophomore, junior, or senior) in order to enroll in the CSC minor or begin taking the courses.
It depends on your specific course plan. The minor is 18 units and students typically complete it within 1 to 4 semesters.

You are welcome to start taking the courses before enrolling in the minor. Many students find this helpful in getting acquainted with the minor. We recommend starting with CSP 300 or CSP 420, which can also count toward one of your General Education requirements. Please see “Can I ‘double dip’ a course for my Counseling and Social Change minor and my General Education (GE) requirement?”.

All of the CSP courses are usually offered in the fall and spring semesters while CSP 300 and CSP 401 are offered in the summer. Courses are typically offered in the afternoon and evening but exact times will vary by semester. Please see
Students should plan to take CSP 400 first (our introductory course) and CSP 460 last (our capstone course). There is no recommendation on whether to take CSP 320 before or after CSP 401. Some modifications can be made to this order pending upon your specific circumstances and availability. All classes can be taken concurrently.
You cannot use an upper division course to satisfy a Counseling and Social Change minor requirement and a major requirement. However, you can use a lower division course to satisfy a Counseling and Social Change minor requirement and a major requirement.
You cannot use a course to satisfy requirements for two minors.
You can use a course to satisfy a Counseling and Social Change minor requirement as well as a GE requirement. Note: Some GE courses require you to have a certain class standing before enrolling in the course. Please consult an advisor from the Office of Evaluations to ensure you will receive credit for a GE requirement.
If you are an IS3D major, you can either enroll in the Counseling and Social Change minor or add Counseling and School Psychology as one of the three departments in your major. Course requirements will vary depending on the path you choose.

Learn more about our class Popular Culture and Counseling!

Important Resources

  • Tuition cost
    Unit prices are subject to change. Visit the Office of Admissions Estimated Cost of Attendance page for the latest information.
  • Financial aid
    All courses are eligible for Financial Aid. Contact the SDSU Financial Aid Office and speak to a financial aid officer familiar with loans for special programs.

Ask Us a Question

 Check out the Daily Aztec Article on the CSC Program!

Daily Aztec Article

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Meet with the Director or one of the Peer Advisors to plan out your classes and get the declaration of major request submitted.


CSP 596 The Black Experience: Counseling and Contemporary Social Movements

Enroll in our newest CSP class and earn credit towards the completion of your CSC Minor! You will learn about contemporary social movements and African-centered helping approaches that can support future helping professionals.  The class is open to both undergraduate and graduate students and there are no prerequisites.


CSP 596 flyer


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